Dinner yesterday evening was at a Japanese restaurant – Bincho Yakitori which opened last year at the OXO Tower then recently opened another branch in London’s Soho. No sushi or sashimi here but a large menu featuring all things grilled on skewers with chicken (tori) the specialty. They also have a large selection of sake (Japanese rice wine) and cocktails.
We went a bit overboard as usual but managed to finish all that we ordered – from the yakitori section, we had the traditional negima (corn-fed chicken and spring onion), kawa (chicken skin), tebasaki (chicken wings) and succulent sori (chicken oysters or what the French call le sot l’y laisse which is a choice morcel of chicken found just underneath the thigh and wing – if you have seen the French film Amélie, it’s the part that one character picks out of the roast chicken when he carves it). From the Kushiyaki part of the menu (non-chicken skewers), we had the buta (pork belly), sake (salmon), gyu (beef rib-eye) and the delicious nasu (aubergine with sesame and miso) for a total of 20 mini skewers (you’ll see in the photos how small they were). Along with this, we also ordered some miso soup, fried rice and stir-fried tofu. The only letdown was the rice which wasn’t Japanese fried rice at all but fried rice mixed with kimchi (could they have a Korean chef in the back?). We skipped dessert and walked down to nearby Frith street to the traditional Bar Italia for, in my opinion, the best cappuccino and espresso in all of London accompanied by a slice of yummy Tiramisu.